Saturday, April 14, 2012

April 2012 Birchbox: Love it!

Ladies, I am really happy about this month's Birchbox! I think next month's might be my last, but this box has seriously made me consider re-upping my subscription.  The theme is "Natural Wonders," and as you can probably tell by my blog mini-facelift and recent FOTD post, I'm trying to convert more of my routine to vegan/cruelty-free products (of course, these aren't necessarily one and the same; OPI and MAC, for example, have vegan products in their lines but are technically NOT cruelty-free because their parent companies test on animals.  But I'm not here to moralize, so... moving on).  This is partly inspired by the fact that my husband and I want to try to have a kid so I've already had to quit caffeine and alcohol for the time being. I also need to avoid phthalates (in a lot of fragrances) and other iffy ingredients, so I thought it might be time to give away some of my stash and seek out replacements.

Well, this month's Birchbox fortunately has nailed that theme! The timing couldn't be better.
Befine Exfoliating Cleanser and SPF15 Daily Moisturizer packets - "single serving"
I'm intrigued to try this skincare because of their "No animal testing whatsoever" statement.  Individual packets like this keep the samples fresh and are nice to have for travelling, too.

Lulu Organics Lavender Hair Powder -
In the beauty blogging-and-Youtube world, powder shampoos have been raved about for the past year or so.  I have quite short hair so I didn't want to invest in a bottle to try it out because I can often go a couple days without a wash without having any oil issues, but this little sample is the perfect size to give the trend a whirl.

Wonderstruck Taylor Swift -
This is the only dud in the box for me at the moment, because I'm concerned about phthalates and companies that are cruelty-free... and I don't know if the company that makes this tests on animals or not.  I'll have to look into it.

Zoya TRUE Spring Collection - Bevin
I've never met anybody named Bevin.  In fact, I'd never have heard of this name at all if it weren't for Flight of the Conchords (45-second mark):

 The manager, Bevin, starts to abuse me. Hey, man, I just want some Muesli.

Everytime I wear this Formaldehyde, Toluene, and DBP-free vegan polish, I'm going to think of these funny Kiwis <3
I thought Bevin might be a dupe for OPI Mermaid's Tears.  A nail swatch shows they aren't identical, but... close enough for me to feel comfortable donating my OPI shade to my sister.

Left: Mermaid's Tears, Right: Bevin
Honestly, I'd be pleased as punch if Birchbox just sent me a mini Zoya polish every month... y'hear that, Zoya and Birchbox?

The Beauty Extra is Yes to Blueberries Facial Cleansing Towelettes.  I love my face wipes!  Plus, these are cruelty-free and vegan (of course. Most of the Yes to... line is vegan <3)  I didn't much care for their Cucumber ones because the scent was so strong, but I have some hopes for these. I wasn't going to shell out to try them because of disliking the Cucumber ones and now I can try without paying :)

Any birchbox twins out there?

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What's the opposite of a haul...?

Hey, there, lovelies!
To the point: I'm looking to do a swap. I could do a giveaway or a blogsale, but I just think a swap would be a lot more fun :D
I don't need the traffic a giveaway would bring and I don't need the money a blogsale might generate... I just want to clear out some of my back-ups and makeup that I basically haven't touched since I swatched it.  Any takers? E-mail me at smsolomo at hotmail dot com
<3 Sarah S.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

I Can't Believe It's All Vegan! FOTD

Happy Saturday and Happy Holidays to those of you who are celebrating!
I broke my budget yesterday buying a few new goodies (the Too Faced concealer and powder, and Stila foundation mentioned below) because they are vegan, and decided to challenge myself to a fully-vegan FOTD!
Let me know what you think <3

Avalon Organics Lavender Revitalizing Eye Gel
Crazy Rumors Soda Fountain Lip Balm in Black Cherry
Wet n Wild Megalast Lipstick in 900B
Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer
Stila Natural Finish Oil-Free Foundation in C
Too Faced Absolutely Flawless Concealer in Perfect Nude
Too Faced Amazing Face SPF15 Powder Foundation in Warm Vanilla
Sleek Contour Kit in Light
Sleek Blush By 3 in Lace (middle shade)
Too Faced Eye Duo in Lucky Charms
Victorian Disco Eye Shadow in Skywalker
Urban Decay 24/7 Eye Pencil in Stash
(I forgot mascara, as I often do when I wear bright monochrome looks, but I don't own a vegan mascara yet anyway!)

ELF: Studio Powder Brush (used to apply liquid foundation), Studio Blush Brush, Studio Crease Brush
Real Techniques: Multi-tasking brush (used to apply foundation powder to set liquids/creams)
Rite Aid Renewal: Contour Brush

Disclaimer: I got the information that all these products are vegan from the internet, not from the manufacturers. Some misinformation could apply - please be sure to check yourself!  All these products are guarenteed cruelty-free.

Wishlist: Vegan mascara, Vegan version of Fix+ (I noticed I look quite powdered, so a spray to diffuse that powdered look would be nice).

Do you own any makeup that just happens to be Vegan?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Victorian Disco House Points EOTD

Bear with me - I'm not yet any good at using loose eyeshadows. I believe this is only my second EOTD using them, and the first was way back around the time I started this blog!  I'll admit I need way more practice.  The red shade's patchiness, especially, is entirely due to my application (I couldn't really tell until I looked at the enlarged photos - it's quite difficult to see in person.  The husband even gave it a thumbs-up before I took pictures).  Any tips on working with loose shadows, guys?
I wanted to see if I could make a look I like using all four colors from Victorian Disco's House Points collection (buy here).

Items used -
Stila Prime Pot in Taffy
Victorian Disco House Points Collection: Helga, Salazar, Rowena, and Godric
Urban Decay 24/7 Liquid Liner in Perversion
Urban Decay 24/7 Pencil Liner in Covet (waterline)
Maybelline Illegal Lengths Mascara

Can you tell I love Harry Potter?
<3 Sarah S.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Sally Hansen Strips Giveaway Winners!

Hi guys! No April Fool's jokes here, just an announcement for a couple of giveaway winners!

Congratulations, Dovey and Madeline Brubaker!

I used and your comments were the winning numbers drawn.
I'll send you e-mails for your info.
Sarah S.